Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

This Week in Food

Photo courtesy of
‘Hank’s Oyster Bar’
courtesy of ‘jichen2′
Running Indefinitely: Kushi Izakaya & Sushi will donate 100% of the sales of its popular Buta Bara Kushiyaki (Pork Belly Kushiyaki) to the Japanese Red Cross to support earthquake and tsunami disaster relief in Japan. The Pork Belly Kushiyaki, made with North Carolina pigs and cooked sous vide for several hours, is Kushi’s best-selling menu item averaging monthly sales of approximately $7,500.00. 

Getting Bigger…Come May Hank’s Oyster Bar will double in size, adding a bar & lounge as well as a private dining room. So what does this mean? Late night hours! Two am on weeknights and 3 am weekends. Our devoted readers might also remember that restaurant partners Jamie Leeds and Sandy Lewis from Hank’s sold CommonWealth Gastro Pub in Columbia Heights last month.

Opening: Because I live for press releases with a lot of adjectives and love the movie Burlesque…”From the restaurateurs behind distinctive dining concepts OYA and SEI comes SAX, an exclusive lounge and restaurant with provocative live entertainment designed to amuse, please and divert the senses with opulent grandeur.” Look for it in May.

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Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

This Week in Food

CUP

Photo Courtesy Sprinkles Cupcakes

 Looks like DC’s food scene will keep growing in 2011 with even more pizza, burgers and cupcakes. Going with that third theme: Georgetown’s soon-to-be-open Sprinkles Cupcakes (3015 M St. NW) is putting its mobile truck on the street come Monday and giving away free cupcakes for two weeks. The first week’s schedule is: Franklin Square on Monday, Georgetown on Tuesday, Dupont Circle Wednesday, Gallery Place Thursday, the Capitol on Friday, Friendship Heights on Saturday, and Eastern Market on Sunday. Sprinkles opens Thursday, March 3rd. (h/t Metrocurean

Want yet another food truck? With paperwork in hand, Sabor’a Street hit the road on Wednesday. Look for the yellow truck for delicious Latin-inspired street food and follow @SaboraStreet

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Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

This Week in Food

Photo courtesy of
‘Pork Loin with Kumquat Marmalade @ Ardeo’
courtesy of ‘jimcollins’

Talk about an empire. DCMud.com reports that restaurateur Ashok Bajaj, the man behind Bombay Club, 701, Rasika, and Ardeo + Bardeo could soon sign a lease for the retail space at 22 West in West End. Bajaj somewhat hinted at a new project in a chat last month with my fave food critic, Tom Sietsema.

My favorite news of the week comes via The Washington Post: Whole Foods Market and a D.C. real estate firm want to build a new store in Navy Yard, “but the developer says that luring the grocer would require $8 million in tax breaks.”  WaPo reports that William C. Smith and Co. is proposing a 39,000-square-foot Whole Foods in the 800 block of New Jersey Ave. SE as part of a building that would also include 375 apartments.

In other Navy Yard news, JDLand writes that a beer garden might soon be on its way to Southeast. The ANC6D (Advisory Neighborhood Commission) voted 6-0 “to support the Bullpen’s plans to open an additional 632-seat beer garden at Half and M, across from the Navy Yard Metro station’s west entrance just north of Nationals Park.”

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Food and Drink, Night Life, Special Events, The Daily Feed

Southampton Beer Dinner

Photo courtesy of
‘Southampton Cuvée des Fleurs’
courtesy of ‘Bernt Rostad’

I’m a sucker for beer dinners.  Call me a fan boy, but I’m a genuine believer that beer and food were made to be paired.  That’s why I pass on to you, dear reader, any scoop I get on one that’s happening in the near future.  I happen to have such a scoop, now. Commonwealth Gastropub in Columbia Heights is hosting a dinner highlighting the beers of New York based Southampton Publik House. Southampton is a fairly recent addition to the DC beer scene and makes a wide variety of regional styles.  Commonwealth is featuring their IPA, Double White, Altbier and Cuvee de Fleurs.  I’m particularly excited about the Double White, a Belgian Wit, that is supposed to be one of Southampton’s best offerings.  Along with the beer, Commonwealth is offering a four course meal to compliment each beer.  The menu includes a red grapefruit salad, mussels, grilled pork, and ricotta in honey.  The event is tomorrow at 6:30 and will run you $45.

Eat Like Me, Food and Drink, We Love Food

Eat Like Me: June’s Best Dishes

Photo courtesy of
‘this is generally what my life looks like at 6:30 p.m. any given day’
courtesy of ‘needlessspaces’

People ask me all the time if they can have my job. NO! Mine. Well, you can have my day job, but you’d have to fight me to the death for my foodie blogging job. And it would be your death, not mine. Along the way, through press dinners, media previews, nights out with friends, and places I’m reviewing for our We Love Food feature, I run into some damn good dishes (for up-to-the minute reviews, follow me on Twitter). Forkful after forkful, I wind up eating some dishes that make me think back with ultimate fondness, and leave me longing for them. Last month I told you all about with them in a little piece I called Eat Like Me. It was so popular with you guys, and I enjoyed writing it so much, that I decided I’ll do it every month. Sort of like a what’s worth it of my food intake – a satoralist of food, if you will.

So. June. It was rainy, right? Ugh. But it was also chock full of food for me, my calendar was overwhelming. June is a busy month in the foodie world. New warm weather menus come hot off the presses, restaurants open their doors to hungry summer crowds, and my friends want to eat out more. It’s pretty glorious. So, click on through to see what made the cut.  Continue reading

Food and Drink, Foodie Roundup, The Features

Foodie Round-Up: Mother’s Day Brunch Edition

Photo courtesy of
‘Mother & Child’
courtesy of ‘nathangibbs’

I want to be my Mom. No, seriously. I do. You know when you read those things that are all like “Oh no! We are turning into our mothers!” – to that I say, YES! Can I please? This is because my Mother is phenomenal. She’s the wisest person I know, and she always knows just what to say to give me a new perspective on something, or make me feel better, and she and my Dad are the only people I can call about some problem in my life who will care as much as I do about it.  She is basically just is the best person to ever exist, period.

So I can’t put together a foodie round-up for Mother’s day and not get picky. I’ve been told about a lot of brunches, practically every restaurant in the city is doing something for Mother’s day brunch, I’m not joking. I’ve been inundated with menus, options and press releases. So instead of just listing them out for you like I did for Easter, I’m going to get more selective and only tell you about the brunches that I’d take my own rockin’ Mother to. So with that, a very subjective short list of brunches worthy of Katie’s Mother, in no particular order. Continue reading

Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

British Food For Under $10

Photo courtesy of
‘Commonwealth’
courtesy of ‘Jenn Larsen’

But really, isn’t $10 all British food is worth? (Ouch, I guess I’m snarky today.) But whatever, point is: CommonWealth, the People’s Gastropub in Columbia Heights  now offers two affordable lunches perfect for the busy weekday. Available Monday through Friday 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., The Local and The Ploughman’s Lunch specials feature Executive Chef Jamie Leeds British-inspired and American-bred classics.

Sigh, I love thrifty deals.

The Local includes a half of the daily sandwich, a mug of house-made soup or a house salad and half a pint, tea/coffee or soft drink for $10. The Ploughman’s Lunch is “inspired from the bygone era, when a ploughman packed his lunch with classic readily available items that would keep while he worked in the fields”. CommonWealth’s Ploughman’s Lunch includes surrey ham, wildflower cheddar, pickled cabbage, apple and freshly baked bread for $9. I don’t know when a plowman ever picked a pig out in the field, but I get the drift. 

I’ve never been, personally, to Commonwealth but it’s on my ever-growing list. WLDC Author Jenn quite likes it, so I think you should be all set to spend time out on their patio this spring, enjoying your cheap lunch with a side of chess or checkers.

The DC 100

DC Omnivore 100: #62, Sweetbreads

 

Vidalia's coddled duck egg with crispy sweetbreads, by Kitchen Wench on Flickr

Vidalia's coddled duck egg with crispy sweetbreads, by Kitchen Wench on Flickr

Our continuing quest to try all 100 foods a DC Omnivore must experience checks out sweetbreads.

There are a few items on the Omnivore 100 list that will elicit a very strong reaction. Sweetbreads certainly has to be one of them. I think there’s no middle ground here, as with, say, sea urchin, you either love it or you hate it.

To the uninitiated, sweetbreads are classified as offal, and are the thymus gland of veal, beef, lamb, or pork. Most of the sweetbreads I’ve been served are veal or lamb, and indeed according to the venerable Fannie Farmer, only veal sweetbreads should rightly be considered (and in the 1918 edition, actually recommended for the “convalescent,” so as I’m sitting here wasting away from flu, a plate of sweetbreads is sounding pretty delicious…). 

It’s hard to adequately describe the taste, but I’ll give it a whirl – properly prepared, veal sweetbreads are slightly firm giving way to a creamy, almost gelatinous succulence. Velvety also comes to mind. I’ve found veal has a more delicate flavor than lamb. 

My very first experience with sweetbreads was about two years ago at PS7Continue reading

Food and Drink, Night Life, We Love Drinks

We Love Drinks: Commonwealth

Commonwealth

"Commonwealth" by Jenn Larsen, on Flickr

It isn’t Commonwealth’s fault that it has the single-most worst view of any bar in the city. Entirely fronted in high glass walls, it overlooks the ghastly architectural blight of DC USA, the single-most worst looking development in the city. Billed as a “gastropub,” that British trend of sexing up the old-school pub with better food than the usual slop, it splits the gastro to one side and the pub to the other, making for a bar area that seems an afterthought. However, even with those three design strikes against it, so far I quite like Commonwealth

As far as the pub section goes, once you get over the view it’s quite cosy, with small tables and a long leather-bound banquette. It’s been an accommodating space for both large groups and small duets. The beer list has selections from the U.S. commonwealths of Pennsylvania, Virginia and Massachusetts in addition to United Kingdom brews. This makes for seemingly strange bedfellows for the eleven drafts, like Michelob and Bellhaven Twisted Thistle, but I suppose it does make it easier for groups of friends with disparate tastes. There are also beer flights and nightly specials, and you can get a U.S. or a U.K. pint (one dollar more). The bottled selection offers about twenty U.K. and fourteen U.S., and so far friendly servers have been knowledgeable and helpful in navigating the choices. As I’ve said before, I know nothing about beer, so this is a plus for me. To date I’ve tried Samuel Smith’s Lager, Black Sheep Yorkshire Ale, and the reliable Smithwick’s Irish Ale to good success.

If you’re looking to nosh, the pub grub is interesting as well. Continue reading